Unlike Android smartphones and tablets, Android TV doesn’t have full multi-user support for some reason. Previously, there was an optional restricted profile you could add, which was probably for kids accessing your smart TV. But with the launch of the new Chromecast with Google TV, there is support for multiple users, but it is quite limited and the restricted profile seems to have disappeared. Now it seems that they are working on some kind of solution with the addition of Kids Profiles on Google TV.
According to Android Police, a Google representative in a support thread confirmed that Google TV will soon have profiles for children. It will “allow you to set up a child-safe space” on the platform, as you will be able to choose which applications will be allowed for children using the profile. Of course, YouTube Kids is available by default, but the other apps they will try to access will need a parent subscription. To prevent them from accidentally accessing a parent account, you will need to enter a PIN when exiting the child profile.
This is good news for parents, of course, as it will make it easier for the kids to drop off while they watch Google TV. But full support for multiple profiles is not yet available for non-child users. Secondary users cannot set up their home screen, have separate app data, or set up their own personal streaming accounts. Only the first account can have access to all your personal apps and settings, while the other accounts can only see what the primary user has.
At least with the launch of children’s profiles, parents will have some control over what their children can access on Google TV. But it would still be better if multiple users could have the same “privileges” as the main user. This is especially important in households that have multiple people with different tastes and preferred streaming services. The workaround for now would be to start the playback on your phone or tablet and then cast it to the TV.
Children’s profiles on Google TV will start rolling out in the next month or so, according to the Google representative. Let’s see if multi-user support will also be improved later.